This week I decided to keep going with the collaboration ales. There seem to be many interesting varieties out there, and one of them that struck me in particular is Stone and Baird Brewing’s Japanese Green Tea IPA (yes, back to the IPAs, too).
From the bottle this IPA pours an opaque, burnt caramel with a white, quickly fleeting head. There is a lot of sediment that makes this beer murky, but this isn’t a particularly yeasty sediment, or at least one that brings out the scent or flavor of yeast. Actually, the nose is pungent with alcohol and not much else. With the first sip the hops bring out fragrant spice and a unique bitterness. For the green tea flavoring, the brewers added Sencha green tea during the dry hopping phase, which seems to add a robust earthy character to the overall grassy and floral qualities of the hops. To top it all off, this beer comes in at a whopping 9.2%, which means that just one can make you feeling bubbly. That said, watch how much and how quickly you drink this one, and try drinking it with deep fried anything or spicy food, like a strong Thai coconut chicken curry.
This beer hits all the right spots for me as a hop lover. Fans of maltier or lighter beers may not find this as appealing, but it’s worth trying in its 12oz. size while it’s on the shelves.
Photo credit: craftbeerculture.com